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Caitlin MacNeal

Caitlin MacNeal is a News Writer based in Washington, D.C. Before joining TPM, Caitlin interned and wrote for the Huffington Post, the Sunlight Foundation and Slate. She is a graduate of Georgetown University.

Articles by Caitlin

Nebraska state senators on Tuesday passed an amendment that would recognize military members' same-sex spouses applying for gun permits in the state despite the state's ban on gay marriage, according to the Omaha World-Herald.

During debate on a bill that would make it easier for out-of-state military spouses to get a Nebraska conceal carry permit, state Sen. Paul Schumacher (R) asked whether the bill would apply to same-sex partners.

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Former CBS News anchor Dan Rather rushed to Brian Williams' defense after the NBC News anchor apologized for falsely claiming that he was on board a helicopter that took rocket propelled grenade fire during the 2003 Iraq invasion.

"I don't know the particulars about that day in Iraq," Rather told Politico on Thursday. "I do know Brian. He's a longtime friend and we have been in a number of war zones and on the same battlefields, competing but together. Brian is an honest, decent man, an excellent reporter and anchor--and a brave one. I can attest that -- like his predecessor Tom Brokaw -- he is a superb pro, and a gutsy one."

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Media critics are not entirely satisfied with NBC News anchor Brian Williams' apology for mistakes he made in describing his experience aboard a helicopter during the 2003 invasion of Iraq.

Williams has made multiple apologies for his most recent version of the story, in which he said the helicopter he was on was hit by a rocket propelled grenade. But the NBC anchors' accounting of what took place has varied over the past decade, and numerous individuals have contested his version of events.

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The pilot of a helicopter on which NBC News anchor Brian Williams flew in Iraq said on Thursday that the aircraft did take some fire in 2003, adding another twist to a story that the newsman was forced to recant and apologize for this week.

Pilot Rich Krell told CNN's Brian Stelter that Williams had some of the facts right, but did make some mistakes in telling the story.

Williams issued multiple apologies on Wednesday night for saying that he was in a helicopter that was hit by a rocket propelled grenade while covering the Iraq War in 2003. He admitted he was in a different helicopter and blamed the errors on "the fog of memory."

But Krell appeared to back up at least some of what Williams has said during repeated tellings of the story over the past decade, even if the anchor did get some things wrong. The most striking thing that Krell said was that the military helicopter Williams was riding in did in fact come under enemy fire, though it was not from an RPG.

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During a March 2013 appearance on the "Late Show with David Letterman," NBC News anchor Brian Williams told a particularly entertaining version of his tale about being shot down in a helicopter while covering the Iraq War.

The problem, as the longtime newsman admitted to the nation on Wednesday night, was that the story was bogus. The helicopter he was traveling in during his 2003 reporting trip was never shot down.

During the Letterman appearance, the NBC anchor started by poking a little fun at himself and praising his NBC colleague Richard Engel.

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California lawmakers on Wednesday introduced a bill that would keep parents from sending their children to school without certain vaccinations due to personal beliefs, the Los Angeles Times reported.

"There are not enough people being vaccinated to contain these dangerous diseases," said Democratic Sen. Richard Pan (pictured above) said while introducing the bill at a press conference. "We should not wait for more children to sicken and die before we act."

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NBC News anchor Brian Williams admitted on Wednesday he was not aboard a helicopter that was forced down due to rocket fire in 2003 in Iraq, a story he told numerous times, Stars and Stripes reported.

Crew members on the 159th Aviation Regiment’s Chinook told Stars and Stripes that Williams was not near the helicopter when it went down, reportedly prompting the anchor to recant his story.

"I was wrong," Williams said, according to the newspaper.

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Republicans in Utah introduced a measure that would alter their oath of office so that lawmakers would swear to the state constitution before the U.S. constitution.

Rep. Kraig Powell (R) initially proposed a constitutional amendment to change the language in the oath from "this state" to "the State of Utah."

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